Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Samsung Announces The Gear Fit, A Fitness Tracker Smartwatch Band Thingy

Because one two wearables weren't enough, Samsung had to go and announce a third. This one is a little bit different from the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, however – it's called the Gear Fit, and it's basically a fitness tracker with a twist... or rather a curve.
The Fit isn't your typical run-of-the-mill fitness tracker, according to Samsung. It's packed with "the most comprehensive fitness tools available," and it also sends notifications from Galaxy smartphones, alerting users of incoming calls, emails, texts, alarms, and the like. So, it's kind of like a Gear, but not really. Only sort of. But still different.
On the hardware side, the Gear Fit sports a 1.84 inch 432x128 curved Super AMOLED display, Bluetooth 4.0, an interchangeable strap, IP67 dust and water resistance, accelerometer, gyroscope, heart monitor, and 210mAh battery. Samsung claims it'll go for 3-4 days between charges, which is decent.
Unfortunately, there's no word on cost, but the Gear Fit should be available starting in April. Update: The Fit (along with the S5 and Gears) will be available on April 11th in 150 countries.
Barcelona, Spain - February 24, 2014 – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. today introduced the Samsung Gear Fit, the industry’s first curved, Super AMOLED wearable device for the active consumer. The Gear Fit offers the unmatched convenience of Samsung Gear technology with the most comprehensive fitness tools available, empowering consumers stay physically active without sacrificing personal style or mobile connectivity. 
“Samsung understands that the next generation of wearable mobile solutions must directly reflect of the diverse interests and needs of consumers,” said JK Shin, CEO and President of IT & Mobile Division, Samsung Electronics. “In response, our Gear product portfolio continues to expand with unique devices for a wide range of lifestyles, including the new Gear Fit designed to help those consumers striving to live more fit and active lives without sacrificing their own personal style or their ability to stay connected on the go.”
Whether used as a standalone or companion device, the Samsung Gear Fit puts people in charge of their personal and active lives while staying connected so they never miss a moment.
The ultimate modern fitness solution
The Samsung Gear Fit was designed to comfortably contour to consumers’ wrists while offering a vivid Super AMOLED display. It provides much more than an everyday fitness band, keeping consumers up to date instant notifications from Galaxy smartphones such as incoming calls, emails, SMS, alarm, S-planner, 3rd party apps while consumers are on the move so they can stay connected. Changeable straps in Black, Orange and Mocha Grey will let users express their individual style, changing the look of the Gear Fit to match their outfit or mood for any type of activity. 
The sleek new Samsung Gear Fit provides the superior connectivity benefits of Samsung wearable technology with a custom, real time fitness coaching to provide unique, personalized advice and workout recommendations.  
The Gear Fit will be available globally starting from April. Full details and product images are available atwww.samsungmobilepress.com or m.samsungmobilepress.com.

Google Translate Adds 9 New Languages From Africa, Asia, And New Zealand,

Google Translate is a pretty great tool, but it's only useful if it actually works where you need it. Today it works in even more places, as Google has updated both the web service and the Android app with nine new languages, mostly from sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.
  • Hausa (Harshen Hausa) - Nigeria and neighboring countries
  • Igbo (Asụsụ Igbo) - Nigeria
  • Yoruba (èdè Yorùbá) - Nigeria and neighboring countries
  • Somali (Af-Soomaali) - Somalia and other countries around the Horn of Africa
  • Zulu (isiZulu) spoken in South Africa and other south-western African countries
  • Mongolian (Монгол хэл) - Mongolia
  • Nepali (नेपाली) - Nepal and India
  • Punjabi language (ਪੰਜਾਬੀ) (Gurmukhi script) - India and Pakistan
  • Maori (Te Reo Māori) - New Zealand
All together, the updated languages cover more than 225 million native speakers around the world. The new translations will work on the web (including searches and voice searches from Google Now, see above) and in the more robust Google Translate app, no updates necessary. Unfortunately the Google Translate app's awesome Conversation Mode still takes a lot more work, and none of the new languages are supported there.
One last thing: Maori was enabled thanks to help from a team of dedicated volunteers. This is significant because Maori is an endangered language, with approximately 30,000 regular speakers. Pai i meatia, iwi.

Twitter v5.0 For Android Finally Released

After having been beta-tested for the last couple months, the new Twitter v5.0 app for Android has finally been released to all users, with a very mixed critical reception.
If you've been participating in the Twitter alpha or beta programs on Android, this is really nothing new - the latest update adds new features like photos in DMs and the ability to filter your notification timeline, but otherwise, this is the same app you've been using for a while.
For everyone else, this is a massive upheaval - the UI is completely different, there are major changes to the layout, and a lot of things have moved around. Predictably, this has angered quite a few people - just check out some of the reviews on the Play Store page from today. That new UI, if it's new to you, is still based on tabs, though those tabs are now swipeable, and there is a persistent compose area on the bottom of your three main columns (Home, Discover, Activity). This compose element does go away when you scroll down, but numerous users are already complaining about it taking up screen space.
DMs are now accessed through a dedicated button in the navigation bar up top, and notifications no longer is its own column, but rather a button on the nav bar alongside the aforementioned DMs shortcut. This is a bit reminiscent of Google+, actually.
Anyway, the new update is live, love it or hate it, and you can read more about a couple of the new features on Twitter's blog, here.
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Google Play Books Update 3.1.17

Google Play Books update 3.1.17 is slowly rolling out, and I'm glad to report that it finally brings a feature a lot of you have been dying to see - book uploading directly from your devices. As always, we have the APK which you can install if you don't see the update just yet right below.

What's New

As I already mentioned, you no longer need to go to Google's website to upload your own books - 3.1.17 allows you to upload PDFs and EPUBs directly. Just open a book in any file manager or from an email, and you'll see a new option to "Upload to Play Books." From there, it's all smooth sailing.
The update also promises quicker and smoother opening of books, which may or may not be a tangible improvement. One of my books opened pretty fast, but another I tried was taking a while, spinning and spinning just like it used to. Play Books now also shows you the relevant cover while you wait for the book to open, which may trick you into thinking it's actually loading faster. Placebo or not? You be the judge.
The Notes UI has gotten some much-needed attention - you can now set note colors and delete them more conveniently.
Further improvements, which aren't as discussion-worthy, are listed below.

What's New
  • Books open more quickly and smoothly.
  • Upload EPUB or PDF files to your library from your phone or tablet. From email or Downloads, touch the file to open it and choose Upload to Play Books.
  • Improved look and feel of highlights and notes.
  • Lower brightness settings, for better reading in low light.
  • Read any book in landscape view.
  • Dismiss recommended books in Read Now.
  • Additional improvements in performance, stability and accessibility.


The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.
File name: com.google.android.apps.books-3.1.17.apk.
Version: 3.1.17 (Android 3.0+).
MD5: b7b9d843d5e339a6da4bf8299685a1cd.

Samsung GALAXY S5 a first look


The new Samsung GALAXY S5 is equipped with a faster, more robust camera, improved durability, a 5.1-inch Full HD Super AMOLED screen, finger scanner, and heart rate monitor, to allow greater integration with your day-to-day life.
For more information about the Samsung GALAXY S5 & Gear 2 seri es, visit: http://www.samsung.com/galaxys5